Keep up-to-date with the latest news and updates from Ganau America:
In the heart of France’s Cote des Blancs region, fourth generation winemaker Laurent Hostomme broke the mold on conventional aging practices for his experimental new cuvee made from the Chouilly winery’s oldest vines. After four years in the cellar, Hostomme designated a 500-bottle portion of his 100% sparkling chardonnay to be dropped 200 feet below the surface of the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Brittany.
In total darkness and at a constant temperature of 55°F, the select bottles of M.Hostomme Abysse Grand Cru aged 12 months under these ideal conditions before being recovered.
Atypical atmospheric pressure and water current shifts are thought to affect the chemical makeup in wine, giving credence to the idea that wine will in fact age differently underwater. Steady underwater conditions slow the curing process to a crawl, creating more intense flavors and aromas, and, not surprisingly, giving the wine more depth.
The silty bottles are sold as is, with labels and capsules looking roughly deteriorated from their year at sea, but a look at the clean seal on the underside of the cork proves the wine was untouched by the elements.
M.Hostomme has been a satisfied client of Ganau for many years, and chose the unsurpassed sealing properties of Ganau’s UNIQ sparkling cork for this groundbreaking experiment. The UNIQ cork verified its supreme quality under Hostomme’s rigorous undersea testing, creating a flawless seal and expanding perfectly upon opening.
- Cork trees thrive in the Mediterranean area such as Portugal, Algeria, Spain, Morocco, France, Italy and Tunisia.
- Cork trees live on average 200 years, but there are cork trees that are 500 years old. They grow up to 75 feet tall.
- A cork tree is ready to be harvested after it is 40 years old.
- Apparently you can find nice cork trees on the grounds at UC Davis and Disneyland. We personally saw beautiful specimen in the Sonoma Plaza and at the Carmel Mission.
- There are mentions of cork and its uses in many ancient documents and literature surviving from as far back as 400 BC
- Seventeenth century French monk, Dom Perignon, is credited with being the first to recognize the ability of cork to contain sparkling wines.
- The bark is ready to be re-harvested after 9 to 12 years. A 200 years old cork tree can be harvested over 16 times.
- The bark is stripped manually by expert harvesters in the months of May to August.
- Cork planks are stored outside for a minimum of 6 months to dry up before they start being processed.
- 1 m3 (35.3 Cubic feet) of cork planks weighs 7-7.5Kg (15.4-16.5 lbs). From 100Kg (220lbs) of raw planks you can obtain 62Kg (136.6lbs) of usable planks.
- Cork is actually made of water-resistant cells that separate the outer bark from the delicate interior bark. It has a unique set of properties not found in any other naturally existing material. It is lightweight, rot resistant, fire resistant, termite resistant, impermeable to gas and liquid, soft and buoyant.
- Cork Oak forests contain one of the world’s highest levels of forest biodiversity including endemic plants and endangered species such as the Iberian Lynx, the Iberian Imperial Eagle, and the Barbary Deer. It is also vital source of income for thousands of family farmers, who for generations have worked these forests. These forests absorb millions of tons of CO2 each year and are a vast provider of oxygen to our planet. The forests also provide the greatest defense against the desertification of this region. The cork forests are one of the most sustainable and environmentally harvested forests in the world.
Name: Gina Isi
@ Ganau you are the: Accounting Manager
You have worked @ Ganau for: 7 years
If you were a wine, you would be a: Sparkling
If you were a Disney character you would be: Merida from Brave
If they could bottle your personality what would the label read: Eternally Fun
Pets: 2 Cats Kenicki & Bag
Home cooked, restaurant or take out: restaurant
My idol is: Bette Midler
My theme song is: Drops of Jupiter
Something you said you’d never do but did anyway was: I said I’d never answer my kids questions by saying “Because I said so”
Something you did but will never do again: Run a 5k and drive a stick in San Francisco!
My favorite physical activity is: Crossfit
I can’t live without: Family & Friends
Name: Jeff Morrow
@ Ganau you are the: Customer Service & Logistics
You have worked @ Ganau for: 6 years
If you were a wine, you would be a: Syrah
If you were a Disney character you would be: Donald Duck
If they could bottle your personality what would the label read: Truth, Love, Loyalty
Pets: I have a toddler at home, no additional responsibility needed
Home cooked, restaurant or take out: home cooked (my wife is a great cook!)
My idol is: My Pop
My theme song is: Count On Me by Bruno Mars
Something you said you’d never do but did anyway was: skydiving
Something you did but will never do again: drive across country in a station wagon
My favorite physical activity is: running/Gym
I can’t live without: family is first but coffee is a close second
Name: Claudia Lopez
@ Ganau you are the: Laboratory Technician
You have worked @ Ganau for: 6 years
If you were a wine, you would be a: a Rosé Champagne
If you were a Disney character you would be: Daisy Duck
If they could bottle your personality what would the label read: Optimistic!
Kids: three – Emily, Jimena, and Joe
Pets: five fish – A, E, I, O and U
Home cooked, restaurant or take out: home-cooked
My idol is: Elephant
My theme song is: Asi es La Vida
Something you said you’d never do but did anyway was: singing karaoke
Something you did but will never do again: drink tequila
My favorite physical activity is: riding bicycles with my kids
I can’t live without: my family and milk
Name: Kerry Smith-King
@ Ganau you are the: Sales Consultant, Sonoma County
You have worked @ Ganau for: 8 years
If you were a wine, you would be a: late harvest dessert wine
If you were a Disney character you would be: Minnie
If they could bottle your personality what would the label read: sweet & kind
Pets: German Shepherd, Zeus
Home cooked, restaurant or take out: home cooked
My idol is: JLo
My theme song is: you make me smile
Something you said you’d never do but did anyway was: bungee Jumping
Something you did but will never do again: bungee Jumping, lol
My favorite physical activity is: rock climbing
I can’t live without: caffeine!
At a Ganau family gathering in Sardinia, we opened a bottle of Barolo from our cellar. It paired well with the main course: home cooked wild boar and lamb with artichokes (it took a full day and three ovens to cook it all). We found a 15 years old Ganau cork in it. The wine was delicious and the cork looked pretty awesome.
Here are the technical specs of the wine from the Giovanni Rosso website. We really enjoyed it.
BAROLO DOCG CERRETTA
Denomination: Barolo D.O.C.G. Cerretta
Wine Area: 100% Nebbiolo
Grades: 14.5% vol
Production: 8000 bottles
First year of production: 1994
Vineyard name / Locality: Cerretta / Serralunga d’Alba
Years planted: 1984, 1996, 2000
Grape-Harvest: Harvested by hand
Fermentation: Vinification in cement tanks, using yeast. Fermentation lasts around 29 days with Remontages, Delestages, and daily punching down of the cap
Ageing: Elevage happens in large 25 hl Fontainebleau Forest French oak casks for 36 months
Bottling: The wine is bottled without filtration
DESCRIPTION OF WINE
Color: Concentrated and bright garnet
Bouquet: Violets, roses and cherry fruit with notes of coffee and layers of complexity
Taste: The palate shows a wealth of Serralunga characteristics: full body, silky tannins, complexity and freshness. Bright red fruits combine with savoury, earthy flavours, a complete structure and a long finish
Evoluzione: 35 anni
Pairings: Stews, red meats and darker game such as Wild Boar
Total Acidity: 6,20%
Maximum Serving Temperature: 16°-17° C
Glasses: Burgundy balloons
Sense of Place artwork definitely won our hearts and minds as the most meaningful and creative design of 2013.
Leslie Bowlus, owner and wine maker, told us how she developed this idea. In her own words:
My life long passion for food and wine and my travels to the world’s greatest places and famous wine regions made me aware of the fact that a wine should reflect where it came from. I have always loved the fact that wherever I was in the world, the most delicious wine was made from varietals grown best in that region which perfectly paired with the local cuisine. I would appreciate that the wine I was drinking was from the perfect place. My philosophy developed into a belief that a wine should reflect its “somewhere-ness” and be true to its varietal characteristics. It should reveal the uniqueness of its terroir, vineyard site, soils, climate and history. The wine should show itself as having a SENSE OF PLACE rather than following the trend of the moment. My winemaking style supports this “Sense of Place” philosophy which includes the use of native yeast found in the vineyard and allowing the wine to age “sur-lie” with the least amount of intervention as possible. I decided on using the world map on my logo to convey my philosophy to the consumers and, by adding the tag line “find your place”, to create a connection between them and my wine.